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Dspdrew's Dolopomyrmex pilatus Journal [208] (Discontinued)

journal dspdrew dolopomyrmex pilatus

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#1 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 23 2015 - 8:57 PM

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3-23-2015

 

Chromerust and I found 22 of these queens 3-20-2015 in Llano, California. Most all of them we dug from founding chambers. Some were actually in the process of digging when we found them, so they were probably flying at the time.

 

ID Thread: http://www.formicult...php/topic/1165-

 

1. Location of collection: Llano, California.
2. Date of collection:  3-20-2015.
3. Habitat of collection:  High Desert.
4. Length (from head to gaster):  13 mm.
5. Color, hue, pattern and texture:  Brown head, orange and brown thorax, orange and brown gaster, yellow legs and antennae.
6. Distinguishing characteristics: Very slow and clumsy.
7. Anything else distinctive:
8. Nest description: Founding chambers are small mounds of dirt 3/4 inches in diameter.

9. Nuptial flight: 9:00 PM 3-20-2015.

 

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Their founding chambers were just small lumps of dirt, a lot like Dorymyrmex insanus, only a little smaller.

 

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These queens are very slow and clumsy as you can see in this video I got of one digging her founding chamber.

 

 

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A few of these have died already, and a couple I put in alcohol for specimens. Right now I have 15 of them. 11 of them are in test tubes, and four are in some small ant farm boxes I made just for them. One test tube has two of them in there together. So far none of them have laid any eggs yet.

 

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Here's one of the queens digging her founding chamber in one of these small ant farm boxes. She wasn't in there for more than two minutes before she found a good corner and started digging.

 


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#2 Offline dean_k - Posted March 24 2015 - 10:26 AM

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Lovely girls. Loved the video.

 

Darn Canada.



#3 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted March 24 2015 - 2:35 PM

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Wow. The behavior is very interesting looking, she looks confused with the glass corner haha. James C. Trager do you think they feed on subterranean termites and ant brood as I mentioned previously?


Edited by Gregory2455, March 24 2015 - 2:35 PM.


#4 Offline Alza - Posted March 24 2015 - 2:46 PM

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Nice looking ant species you got there :)



#5 Offline Miles - Posted March 24 2015 - 9:51 PM

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These are very attractive queens. Quite fascinating. I'll be following this journal closely.


Hi, I'm Miles! I study ants, environmental science, political science, and science communication at Montana State University in Bozeman. I've been keeping ants for nearly a decade and I'm passionate about conservation and public service.

 

Website | YouTube Channel


#6 Offline James C. Trager - Posted March 25 2015 - 5:08 AM

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I have no idea what these eat. This ant has only recently been discovered and named, and its natural history is virtually unknown. 



#7 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 25 2015 - 5:45 AM

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It does say on page 93 of this document (http://www.antwiki.o.../Cover_2007.pdf), "The workers fed intermittently on fresh ant brood and termite nymphs, but ignored other dead insects and sweet substances."


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#8 Offline gcsnelling - Posted March 31 2015 - 3:47 AM

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Very cool find, Please preserve any more that die, voucher material in various collections would be very valluable. This is only the second collection of this ant in California that I am aware of. The first was in the same general area as your collection. Can you send me all the pertinent collection data so I can include in the desert ants paper which will for ever be in preparation. If you have spare preserved material you can spare I would be happy to pass it around to the appropriate places. Hey any luck finding more of those Pheidole moerens?


Edited by gcsnelling, March 31 2015 - 3:47 AM.


#9 Offline dspdrew - Posted March 31 2015 - 10:29 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Sure I'll send the data and a few specimens. These just keep dying one by one, so I have plenty specimens. I wish I knew what would trigger their egg laying, because it just doesn't seem to be happening. I kind of forgot all about the Pheidole. I think I actually already have some in alcohol; if not, I can collect some more. I'll send it all along with that Camponotus I asked you about way back, that nobody seems to be able to properly ID. I would love if you had some way to help out with that.



#10 Offline gcsnelling - Posted March 31 2015 - 1:21 PM

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sounds good, email me for a new mailing address.



#11 Offline cpman - Posted April 4 2015 - 6:27 PM

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Could they be a semi-claustral species? That would explain why they haven't layed eggs and keep dying.

They don't look like it, but you might as well try feeding them some protein...



#12 Online drtrmiller - Posted April 4 2015 - 6:56 PM

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As wonkily as they lumber along the ground, I couldn't see them being semi-claustral, unless they feed solely on helpless mana raining down from heaven.


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#13 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 4 2015 - 6:59 PM

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As wonkily as they lumber along the ground, I couldn't see them being semi-claustral, unless they feed solely on helpless mana raining down from heaven.

 

Haha. :lol:  I'm pretty sure they aren't semi-claustral, considering what Terry said, and that they are thought to be completely subterranean. Also, they don't look like they would ever be coming out of these founding chambers they dig.



#14 Offline Vendayn - Posted April 4 2015 - 9:54 PM

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Its possible they eat things underground, which may be how they get their food. So, they could be sort of semi-claustral...but, staying underground. There is plenty of insects that burrow underground that they could potentially eat.



#15 Offline Alza - Posted April 5 2015 - 3:32 PM

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never thought of that....Wow


this species is so unknown...



#16 Online drtrmiller - Posted April 5 2015 - 3:44 PM

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Since it is not suspected that these produce large colonies, I would say it is possible the extended gut section of the queen could serve as host to some interesting symbionts for the purpose of obtaining nutrition from unusual sources, such as bacteria in groundwater, similar to how a cow has multiple stomachs to be able to obtain nutrition from grass with the help of fermentation bacteria.

 

If they do obtain nutrition from underground sources, they're likely to fare poorly in Drew's dirt boxes, since he cooks the dirt, killing everything in it.

 

Drew should dissect one on camera for us!



#17 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 5 2015 - 4:02 PM

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:lol:



#18 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 5 2015 - 8:47 PM

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Update 4-5-2015

 

Finally one queen has laid some eggs. :D

 

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A few more queens have died, including two of the ones I put in the ant farm boxes. I have since replaced them, and so far I can tell the three I have left are still alive, because I can see them moving. There's also three more left in test tubes as well.

 

These queens seem almost oblivious to what's going on around them; there is hardly a reaction to anything. Also I notice they like to clean their gasters a lot. They're almost always curled over cleaning away, paying no attention to anything else.



#19 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted April 5 2015 - 11:05 PM

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About time. How many do you have left? I feel these are going to get workers then be a bigger chore than Acromyrmex versicolor.



#20 Online drtrmiller - Posted April 5 2015 - 11:07 PM

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I feel these are going to get workers then be a bigger chore than Acromyrmex versicolor.

 

I don't understand what you wrote.


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